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Seton Hill University women's lacrosse coach Quigley called 'a gift from God'

| Sunday, March 17, 2013, 11:15 p.m.
ERIC SCHMADEL I TRIBUNE-REVIEW
John Heberlig, chief of Carlisle fire rescue services, recalls the bus accident involving the bus carrying the Seton Hill University women's lacrosse team on Sunday, March 17, 2013, at the fire hall in Carlisle.

The mother of the Seton Hill University women's lacrosse coach who died in a bus crash encouraged the team “to be strong” in the face of tragedy.

“My daughter would want them to know that she loved every one of her lacrosse players, and she would want them to be strong and live life to the fullest,” Patty Trionfo, 54, said on Sunday. “I keep getting that in my heart.”

State police are investigating the cause of the Cumberland County crash on Saturday that killed coach Kristina Quigley, 30, of Greensburg, her unborn son, and bus driver Anthony M. Guaetta, 61, of Johnstown. Fourteen people were injured.

Two passengers on the bus remained hospitalized on Sunday in Penn State Hershey Medical Center, but no information was released about their identities or conditions, The Associated Press reported. A patient in Holy Spirit Health System was released on Sunday.

An autopsy on Guaetta was scheduled for Monday, said Charley Hall, Cumberland County coroner. A woman who answered the phone in the Dauphin County Coroner's Office said no new information was available on Quigley's cause of death.

The bus was carrying the team to a match with Millersville University, about 50 miles from the crash site on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Carlisle Fire and Rescue Services Chief John Heberlig said that when he arrived, students were being pulled from the bus through windows.

He could hear some students screaming and others crying.

“I've been on some bad (accidents), but you're (usually) talking about one to three people.”

The crash touched the lives of nearly everyone on the campus of the Roman Catholic liberal arts school of 2,300 students in Greensburg where Quigley had begun her second season as coach after leading the team to 11 victories in her first season.

Trionfo and her husband, Sobby, 55, of Baltimore County, Md., remembered their daughter as a caring, selfless woman who loved her husband and was a great mother.

“She was a gift from God,” Patty Trionfo said. “A total gift from God.”

She mentored her lacrosse students, donated her hair to Locks of Love and helped children at Christmastime, her mother said.

Her brother Nicholas, Sobby Trionfo said, summed Quigley up in one word: selfless.

“In everything, in everybody she touched,” he said.

She married Glenn Quigley — the two met in fifth grade — five years ago. They have a son, Gavin, who is 2 12.

“Our family is so close that when she got married, her two bridesmaids were her two brothers,” Trionfo said. “Nicholas was the maid of honor in her wedding.”

Quigley spoke with her brothers Nicholas and Tony every day, Patty Trionfo said.

A Baltimore-area native and graduate of Duquesne University, Quigley came to Seton Hill from Erskine College in Due West, S.C., where she started the lacrosse program.

She was an assistant volunteer lacrosse coach in 2007 at Duquesne, where she had played lacrosse in 2002-03. A talented athlete, she played at Dundalk High School in the Baltimore area, where she was named female Athlete of the Year.

“She lived 60 years in a 30-year period,” her mother said.

Quigley taught her players more than lacrosse; she taught them “how to be good citizens in life,” Trionfo said. “She would have kept on touching people's lives.”

Funeral services will be held in the Baltimore area.

Staff writer Kari Andren contributed to this report. Rossilynne Skena is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6646 or rskena@tribweb.com.

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